How old is your current garden?

alicia7b(z7b/8aNC)March 17, 2008

I have a few beds around the old house site that I've been working in with varying degrees of success for 11 years. I also have a big perennial bed that's about 35' x 90' that's turning 5 this year. It's matured much faster than the other beds because it's not sloped and doesn't have tree roots in it. Then there's the brand new beds around the old house site.

I am curious to know how old your gardens are and how much they've changed since their inception.

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Moved here in Fall 2001. Yard, except for some trees and foundation planings, was EMPTY. I don't think the previous owner ever went outside. We planted trees and some shrubs immediately the first fall, also a large number daffodils. Huge sloping bank in backyard planted in 2004--it was completely blank except for a background hedge of Leland Cypress. That was a huge undertaking that we had professional help with due to the size. Last 3 years working on more perennials there, plus perennials on the two sides of the house. It never ends...I am now working on shrubs along property line/sidewalk on side of house.
This is 2005, looks pretty much the same now except shrubs and trees bigger. Some perennials moved about. Hopefully we won't have a bad drought like last year, 2007 the yard started lovely but lots died last summer.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 5:50PM
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House was new and I moved in in Feb. 2007. I had the builder do absolutly nothing except grade the land about 75 to 100 ft out from the house. I planted the lawn last year in Bermuda which seemed to weather the drought fairly well. We were green into August. And it's coming back, pretty little green sprigs are already there. I need to overseed this year, the weather is being really good to us here on the rain scale so I have my fingers crossed it keeps it up! I have one tree beside the drive that I've cleaned up around and have pine needles and some containers around. The serious stuff starts this year and I can't wait!!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 9:38PM
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Tammy Kennedy

We moved to NC in '91, bought our house in '93 and i started putzing right off. First thing was pulling out the old foundation shrubs, which are now scattered around the prop. My first bed was my 'blue' bed, and it's still there, though not all blue anymore. We terraced the slope between the blue bed and house, made the bed along the house and reworked the walkways within a year or so. Next, within a year or 2, came the paisley shaped bed with donated daylilies from my mentor. Surrounded the 2 remaining plum trees yr or so later and made our boomerang bed. Then in 97 we made the big, long 100' perennial fence bed up front. Somewhere in there we added some small misc beds and the rounded gazebo, as well as working at cleaning up the woods and beginning to plant natives in there. Around '00 we worked the slope on the left side across from the existing terraces into matching terraces with 2 ponds and a stream with some planting beds. When our psycho neighbors (now gone) put up a fence and cut off our common turnaround in '92, we used the best light in the drive to make a narrow row of tubs along the fence with have a postage stamp orchard in it. We've since reworked the area to the south of the paisley bed into raised metal edged beds about 3-4 years ago. The same time we made a concerted effort to get the woodlands garden full of natives and cleaned up. Now i need to remove the periwinkle i planted in the first place that has gotten out of hand, and plant just down from the finished area where we lost a dogwood and a mock orange is taking over that i don't want.

Our next big job is much bigger than the front and many times more intimidating, and it is the back yard. I've plopped a few things in willy nilly in the years, but for the most part, it's unplanned and open (well, except for the woods along the south edge). Now that the trees have been thinned to let in some more light and allow better growth, i need to plan a little better before planting. I carefully observed the light patterns last summer so i know where i can squeeze in a few more fruit trees, and other light lovers. Much of the wooded area along the other side will eventually have native perennials and deciduous azaleas and other native understory shrubs. I'm sure some non-natives will come in, too- i'm no purist. Our hope is to some day have a koi pond back there in between the sun and shade as well- but that's a long way off.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 11:26AM
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Tooslim I could not see your photo when I cut and pasted the link.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 11:35AM
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Tammy I'm not a native purist either, although I love natives. I thought I had one small patch with just natives until I looked at the crinum smack dab in the middle of it and remembered the daffodils that I planted there too. I would actually like to create a bed with just natives this year.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 11:38AM
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Finished our house in Fall 2005. It's a work in progress with a lot of experimenting and shovel pruning! For anyone starting out from scratch, I hope this is encouraging!

AUGUST 2005:

JUNE 2006:

JUNE 2007:

Stay tuned for June 2008!


    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 11:01AM
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Cameron that's a good idea, to take pictures to show the garden's progression.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2008 at 11:14AM
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